Date registered: Oct 2009
Vehicle: 2003 C230K M271 Engine
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada
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This has to happen on almost all M271 engines in my mind due to the smallest timing chain ever made being put on these cars. It is not good when the guy at the engine center you buy the parts from calls it a bicycle chain... so yeah its a known problem. My timing chain stretched enough on my 2003 c230 kompressor at 140,000 km to make the car barely run. Anywyas the dealership said that the chain was worn and also the timing sprockets were worn. The dealership said each sprocket was $900 dollars..so needless to say car was brought home to my dads garage and we took it apart. The chain was definately worn out but the gears looked fine, so we just put a new chain and new tensioner and 2 new guides on. It has been fine for 15,000 km now..but who knows how long this POS will last..i'm going to run it till it blows anyways.
Mercedes also had the brilliant idea of wedging the timing cover between the cylinder head and the oil pan. So once you take the timing cover off its impossible to get back on without either taking off the oil pan or the cylinder head. We decided to just cut the cylinder head gasket (3 thin metal gaskets) off the end overhanging the timing cover and wedge the timing cover back on with lots of gasket maker. The car did leak some oil out the front of the timing cover but more gasket maker on the outside edge has fixed that for the most part.
This job can be done yourself if you know what you are doing as everything has to come off the front of the engine to take off the timing cover.
I hope this helps.